PrimeWest is to expand its mandate in agricultural land from A$100m to A$350m (€63m to €189m) and will also explore listing the vehicle.

The Perth-based fund manager said it plans to use part of the proceeds from a fully-underwritten A$55m as a cornerstone investment in its enlarged PrimeWest Agricultural Fund (PAF) Trust No 1 fund.

“Having regard to opportunities available in the market, the target fund size for PAF has been increased to A$350m,” the company said.

“Primewest will also explore potential to list this fund on the ASX in due course.”

David Schwartz, managing director of Primewest, said: “Since launching the Primewest Agricultural Fund in April 2020, we have sought to expand this fund through high-quality acquisitions.

“We are now in active discussions with a number of vendors in a wider range of agricultural classes, including almonds, tomatoes and vineyards.”

The fund would seek to acquire these assets in coming months should they satisfy Primewest’s due diligence protocols, he said.

PrimeWest had originally intended to use the listed vehicle Vitalharvest Freehold Trust to establish a farmland trust, focussing on horticultural investments.

But Vitalharvest is being sold to Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets, which has offered to take over and privatise the trust in a A$300m cash bid.

Schwartz said: “We have been exploring the launch of an open-ended investment fund for some time. The launch of PrimeWest Property Income Fund will provide our investors with the benefits of the PrimeWest investment process while having access to liquidity over time.”

He said PrimeWest would also increase the equity base of the property income fund.

“We are confident that these funds will be attractive to our existing investors, and will also provide an opportunity to attract a broader investor universe over time.”

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